This semester in Champlain Valley Union (CVU) High School’s Weather, Climate and Oceans classes, students are working together to send a measuring device into the stratosphere. For those unfamiliar with the makeup of the atmosphere, the atmosphere has four levels—the troposphere, the stratosphere, the mesosphere, and the thermosphere. Human kind, and all weather on earth exists in the troposphere, which extends approximately four to 12 miles from the earth’s surface into the air. CVU’s contraption will travel beyond the troposphere into the stratosphere, a portion of the atmosphere beyond the reach of weather. At these heights, the students will be able to gather information about the atmosphere conditions that are now out of our reach. This project is an incredible feat for CVU students, who are working together in a variety of teams, ranging from publicity to safety and legality, to engineering itself, to make this achievement possible.
Gregory Goldman, a member of the engineering team, says that the final project will weigh three to five pounds and carry a wide array of instruments to measure pressure, humidity, and temperature. Will Kay, a senior on the engineering team, has high hopes for the project. “This endeavor looks promising, and we should soon be able to develop it further,” he reports. “Like a butterfly breaking from the cocoon of adversity, our weather balloon will soar above the clouds and serve as a shrine to childlike curiosity and scientific exploration that is within the hearts of each member of this Weather, Climate, and Oceans class.”
The launch date is Thursday, May 22, weather permitting. The event will take place at CVU at 2pm and will be open to the public.